What is the role of humor and satire in contemporary democracies? Is the ‘right not to be offended’ more important than the ‘right to offend’? Questions such as these have become more and more prominent in recent years, within and outside Europe – suffice it to mention the disputes over Charlie Hebdo’s use of dark humor (before and after the 2015 terrorist attack), as well as the transnational debates sparkled by Jan Böhmermann’s Erdoğan poem (2016) or Michelle Wolf’s jokes at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner (2018).
This interdisciplinary summer school will focus on the various forms taken by humour in contemporary European societies; we will discuss a broad range of sources, from literature and stand-up comedy to memes and cartoons. You will have a chance to attend and take active part in seminars held by leading international scholars in the fields of Sociology, Journalism, Law, Politics, Literary and Cultural Studies; each session will focus on a specific topic, such as satire and populism, freedom of speech and hate speech, theoretical and empirical approaches to humor research, and several others.